Former police officer sues Ceredo for retaliatory discharge

By Kyla Asbury | May 18, 2015

WAYNE – A former police officer is suing the Town of Ceredo after he claims he was retaliated against and wrongfully discharged from his employment.

Ceredo Police Department and Anthony Poston, the chief of police were also named as defendants in the suit.

Jeremy M. Walters was hired by the defendants as a police officer on Oct. 3, 2003, and Poston was his supervisor, according to a complaint filed in Wayne Circuit Court.

Walters claims during his employment, he performed his duties in an exemplary manner and, due to his exemplary performance, in April 2010, he was promoted to sergeant, and in December 2012, he was promoted to lieutenant.

In late 2013, Walters discovered another Ceredo police officer, Jamie Wolfe, was purporting to issue traffic citations to justify the receipt of overtime pay for which the town and the police department would be reimbursed through the West Virginia Governor's Highway Safety Program, according to the suit.

Walters claims he discovered that many of Wolfe's traffic citations were fraudulent and that he had not been working during the hours when the fraudulent citations were allegedly issued and was not entitled to the claimed overtime pay.

In October or November 2013, Walters reported his discovery to Poston, however, Poston took no corrective or disciplinary action against Wolfe, according to the suit.

Walters claims in February or March 2014, he again reported Wolfe's fraudulent activities to Poston and Poston once again took no corrective action against Wolfe.

Poston then began to retaliate against Walters and, in October, due to the stress of the retaliatory conduct, as well as other medical issues, Walters  began a medical leave of absence and was released to return to work on Nov. 1.

Walters claims before returning to work, he learned of further retaliatory conduct by Poston, including placement of cameras in Walters' office and that Poston intended to terminated his employment.

By letter dated Nov. 21, from Otis Adkins, the mayor of Ceredo, the defendants terminated Walters' employment, according to the suit.

Walters is seeking compensatory damages. He is being represented by Mark Goldner of Hughes & Goldner.

The case is assigned to Circuit Judge James H. Young Jr.

Wayne Circuit Court case number: 15-C-079

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